Companies listed on the Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX) reported continued positive performance for the first half of this year despite the direct effects and spillovers of Covid-19 on regional and international stock markets.
Power transmission provider Pestech (Cambodia) Plc (PEPC) reported a 300 per cent surge in net profit to $9.243 million in the first half of this year from $2.343 million during the same period last year.
The CSX noted in a statement received by The Post on Monday that the water supply and banking sectors had been looking to “exploit opportunities in the market”.
This, it said, resulted in 71 per cent and 2.7 per cent gains in net profit for state-owned utility Phnom Penh Water Supply Authority (PPWSA) and the largest locally-owned commercial bank Acleda Bank Plc (ABC) in the period from January-June.
State-owned river port operator Phnom Penh Autonomous Port (PPAP) generated some $22.264 million in revenue during the first three quarters, up 2.56 per cent from $21.707 in the year-ago period.
CSX vice-president Ha Jong-weon told The Post that the performance of the listed firms hinges on the industry they operate in. Considering the ongoing crisis, overall performance on the bourse has been quite encouraging.
He said the port business seems to be doing fine despite the lower traffic during Covid-19.
On the other hand, a drying up of orders amid dwindling demand coupled with export delays due to lockdown restrictions have hit the garment industry particularly hard, he added.
He said industrial park developer and operator Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone Plc (PPSP) logged a significant decline in profits in the first six months of this year and has opted to keep cash in hand for its operations instead of paying dividends to shareholders this year.
Taiwanese-owned garment manufacturer Grand Twins International (Cambodia) Plc (GTI) has been crushed under the weight of the pandemic, posting a dip in purchase orders for the period April-June, resulting in a year-on-year drop in revenue for the quarter, he said.
“This shows that the pandemic really has had an impact on the business of CSX’s listed companies, however, there shouldn’t be any concern since they are doing just fine and the impact has only slowed down the pace of their growth which was supposed to be a lot more stringent had Covid-19 not happened.
“In my personal opinion, this is a good time for smart investors to buy low and keep it to sell high in the near future as the business and economy of Cambodia is forecasted to have positive growth from next year and the government has tried its best to help local businesses and companies and boost economic activity in the country by several measurements,” Ha said.
There are currently 13 listed firms in the Kingdom – seven stock-listed and six corporate bond-listed. The 13 companies have raised a combined $253 million and the stock index increased more than 57 per cent last year over 2018, CSX data show.
In the first nine months of this year, two companies listed stocks and three listed bonds. The five firms have raised a combined $92 million, the data show.